This Halloween, take a moment to consider the writing nightmares you’ve had or are afraid of experiencing. The following are ten.
1) Misspelling the name of the person you’re addressing in an email or cover letter.
2) Producing an embarrassing typo for a word like ‘batch,’ ‘feckless,’ or ‘public.’
3) Putting the finishing touches on a ten-page essay, only to re-read the essay question and realize you didn’t answer it.
4) Repeatedly misusing ‘matriculate,’ ‘genuflect,’ ‘obfuscate,’ or any other multi-syllabic word derived from Latin that was supposed to make you sound smart.
5) That brilliant manifesto/sonnet/one-act play you wrote last night? What it looks like the next morning.
6) Laboring on a 2500-word paper due in less than 24 hours and based on volumes of source material you didn’t read.
7) Forgetting to delete something from your first draft, such as a note you leave for yourself (“Need to fudge the data more”).
8) Basing the central argument of your article on a logical fallacy or on your misreading of another person’s work.
9) Running out of ideas.
10) Hitting publish on a blog post before it’s